Speed limits would be lowered to 30km/h in Victorian residential streets and school zones under a new parliamentary safety push.
Drivers would have to cut at least 10km/h, and up to 30km/h, off their speedometer under the proposed change aimed at slowing down motorists and encouraging more people to walk and cycle.
Speed limits could also be reduced near hospitals under the proposed shake-up which is being considered by VicRoads and Victoria Police.
An Upper House committee has urged VicRoads, police and "other stakeholders" to consider rethinking the need for speed, pointing to legislation in European and Asian cities where "prioritised active transport" takes precedent over car use in residential streets and activity centres.
Opposition planning spokesman Brian Tee, a member of the committee behind the recommendation, said the speed cut could also apply to hospitals and health centres.
"We want the relevant people to look at the merits of changing it and make a decision," he said.
"I'm sure there will be support as well as opposition and that's why we've put it to the experts."
Speed limits as low as 40km/h now exist in Victorian school zones and restrictions of 50km/h and 60km/h apply to residential streets.
But Road Policing Strategies Inspector Wayne Chatters said VicRoads was reviewing speed zones and had invited Victoria Police to participate.
VicRoads safer roads director Con Stasinos said more than 600 submissions had been received.
"Some of these submissions had requested 30km/h speed limits in various locations including areas where there are high numbers of pedestrians, particularly children," he said.
The report, tabled in Parliament last week, said the case for lowering speed limits in school zones, residential and "other appropriate areas" should be considered by present or future speed limit reviews.
Melbourne and Yarra councils have previously supported a 30km/h limit.
A 2009 VicHealth report found only 29 per cent of parents thought speed limits in their communities should be reduced to 30km/h to make the area safer for children.
Article from the Herald Sun, 27 May 2012.